Isle Of Man / Ellan Vannin

2019 Douglas horse trams up and running after delay

Horse tram on Douglas Promenade
Image caption Testing of the new tramlines and horse training has been completed

The Douglas horse tram season has started a month later than initially scheduled as a result of delays to the promenade refurbishment scheme.

The infrastructure department said testing of the new tramlines and horse training had now been completed.

It is the first time the rails have been renewed since 1937.

The 2019 season had been due to start on 25 April but "below ground obstructions" during the refurbishment put that on hold.

The trams are initially running for a reduced length of less than half a mile, but the line will be extended as more track is laid during the summer months.

A reduced ticket price has been introduced in the interim to compensate for the shortened trip, the department said.

Infrastructure minister Ray Harmer said the 0.3 mile (0.5km) length of the line was "still a valuable journey".

Image copyright DOI
Image caption The first horse tram of the 2019 season set off from the Strathallan terminal on Friday morning

The new tramlines are capable of accommodating cars from the Manx Electric Railway, as well as the horse trams.

Mr Harmer said running the railway into Douglas town centre was an "aspiration" for the future.

He said it had been built into the scheme as "a possibility", adding: "It may not happen, but it's a possibility."

The full length of the completed horse tramway will be 1.6 miles (2.6km) from the Strathallan terminal to the Sea Terminal.

The historic trams have been running along Douglas Promenade for more than 140 years.

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